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Man Sentenced In 14-Year-Old Cold Case Rape

Victim's Statement: 'I Will Forever Be Haunted By The Crime'
Jail Cells (file / credit: clipart.com)

Jail Cells (file/credit: clipart.com)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Justice has been delivered for the victim of a cold case rape.

Lerio Guerrero was sentenced Tuesday, 14 years after he committed the crime on the Lower East Side.

He pleaded guilty to the rape charges earlier this month, according to prosecutors.

WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reports

Guerrero was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the 1998 rape of a 28-year-old NYU graduate student in her Orchard Street apartment, WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reported.

Guerrero was picked up on another charge in a trespassing case and his DNA left on a cigarette butt was enough to tie him to the rape.

Authorities linked Guerrero to the rape through DNA last year.

The victim said in a statement read to the court, “he attacked me, threatened to kill me, to cut my face, to rape my roommate, then took me for a walk so he could rob me.”

After Guerrero forced his victim to take money out of an ATM, she was able to break away and run, Cornell reported.

After the assault and in the years after the crime, “it seemed my whole world had gone black and the soundtrack to my life was the sound of sirens and screaming,” the victim’s statement read.

The victim also said she feared for her life over the past 14 years, knowing her attacker was still on the streets.

“I booby-trapped my windows and doors, I went to bed with a knife under my pillow but rarely slept. I will forever be haunted by the crime,” the victim’s statement read.